Monday, 3 March 2014

Bridesmaid duty - Engagement Party Time

It was one of my best friends engagement party last night and I must say it was such a great cultural experience. 

My friend Mehmuna is Asian - Pakistani and so in order to fit in with the culture I wore the traditional Asian attire. 

I just love all the glitz and glam of the sparkles and detail of this traditional dress. 

The occasion started off with of course getting the Bride to be ready for the camera and looking absolutely stunning for her party, with her closest friends and family and the same for her Husband to be Azeem.

Don't you think Mehmuna looks absolutely amazing. I love the outfit and think she looks a million dollars and I'm getting so excited for her big day. 

The make up close up.

We then arrived at the venue. A lovely Asian cuisine restaurant that served the food in a buffet like fashion. 

The first aspect of the evening consisted of the receiving of gifts from Azeems side of the family to Mehmuna. The table and layout of the gifts looked gorgeous. 

Along with the beautiful cake... 

And my favourite part. The display of the bride and groom rings. This is such a beautiful idea and I will sure be stealing this idea when it comes to my own engagement/wedding. 

Next came the exchange of rings. I think this is such a special and intimate part of the evening. 

It was so lovely to see the love between them. 

The best celebratory event happened next. And to anyone with a sweet tooth, you will like this part too. This is the cutting of the cake. This is very much an English idea too at the Traditional English weddings.

The colour scheme and the cake all fit so perfectly and the whole evening was so special and magical. 

So all that is left to say is a Huge Huge Congratulations! And I wish you all the best now and in the future for both of you and I'm sure you will both be very happy together. 

Lots of love to you both from us Bridesmaids, myself and Saira. 

To the happy couple.... 

Mehmuna and Azeem - Congratulations on your engagement! 

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

NOTD: Nails of the Day

Who doesn't love a good DIY manicure kit? Although the initial cost may seem a little pricey, I think it's so worth it when you add up the price for each salon visit. I know you can't beat a good gel nail or acrylic manicure for the professional finish but for an everyday classy look, a nice at home manicure is just the key. 

Andy bought me the most amazing Champneys Spa Manicure kit as a Christmas present this year, I must admit, I was very impressed. 

It comes complete with Top and Base coat, a Champneys salon nail colour, a nail buffer, nail files, hand scrub, cuticle softener, a hydrating over night moisturer and a pair of cotton gloves. 

The kit states a perfect spa manicure in 5 easy steps. As I haven't been the salon for a while now and I work in a laboratory where it is essential to wash your hands many times a day, my nails were looking a bit dull... 

I followed the 5 steps as follows: 

1. Start by filing your nails, from side to centre trying to avoid going back and forth as this damages the nail. 

2. Although the next step is use the softening hand scrub, I did buff my nails using the buffer provided and followed each step as I had many ridges to smooth across the nail. I then scrubbed my hands and oh my word! It was the most amazing feeling. My hands felt so silky smooth, refreshed and tingly. I just loved it. 

3. Massage in a tiny blob of cuticle softener to each nail. 

4. This step is optional. Use the overnight hydrating moisturiser and leave to soak in the skin using the cotton gloves provided. 

5. Next is to apply 1 coat of top and base   coat. 2 coats of the Champneys salon colour followed by 1 coat of top and base colour. 

And there you have it... The perfect spa manicure. What do you think of the results? 

Share your links below and show me your perfect manicure and hints and tips...

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Forever the Bridesmaid - The Dress

Wedding Planning- The Dress

I have such, such exciting news.... I am going to be a Bridesmaid twice over!!

I am going to be a Bridesmaid for two of my most precious friends in the whole wide world, Jessica and Mehmuna. I love my Jessica to pieces and she's been through some of life's most toughest challenges over the past few years and I admire her strength to get through these times while remaining so positive about life and her future. Mehmuna is my childhood friend. We have been friends for over ten years now and have gone through every life stage together and so to be asked to be a bridesmaid on her most special day, especially an Asian wedding, is the biggest honour ever! 

So a massive Congratulations is in order for Jessica and her Fiancé Paul and Mehmuna and her Fiancé Azeem. Jessica and Mehmuna both deserve all the happiness in the world and I am over the moon that they can finally plan and have the wedding of there dreams. A wonderful marriage made special everyday, full of love, peace and happiness together for the both of them.

So, first things first, THE DRESS!

I am sure 90% or more of all women have imagined and dreamed about how wonderful, amazing, gorgeous and stunning their wedding dress will be when they finally Tie the knot themselves. The WOW and teary moment when you walk into your venue and everyone sees your dress for the first time! The moment when all the women at your wedding pull out their tissues to wipe away those tears of amazement and happiness for you.

But is wedding dress shopping the ultimate dream we all imagine, the blissful dream we can actually live out in reality? Or is there too much pressure to find the ultimate perfect dress, that we feel we are too overwhelmed and feel we might go nuts?

I myself am not married yet and so up until this time I have never actually been wedding dress shopping. I have been a Bridesmaid twice before making this my third and fourth time. I think I am becoming an expert maid as the saying goes... 

Forever the Bridesmaid, never the Bride.

I have come up with a simple check list of what I think will ease the pressure when shopping for your dream dress...

1. Choosing the best Time 

As the old saying goes, early bird gets the worm... And on this occasion I feel the Bride will get the most benefit from a fresh Bridal team who have yet to deal with a day full of so-called Bridezillas with a million and one requests. The store should be less crowded early morning and so the Bride will get full privacy from the women just walking in off the streets to browse the Wedding dresses on offer. The best time to go would be in the week, as many of us go out to work Mon-Fri and so a Saturday in a Bridal shop is a big NO-NO to lessen the stress.

2.Choosing your style of dress

When shopping with Jessica, the first thing we thought about once leaving the shop is where to start as each dress was beautiful in their own unique way? We had great advice from the wedding consultant who advised Jessica to choose the style she liked most and decide what she felt most comfortable, beautiful and bridal in. 
The silhouette you want is the most important starting point for wedding dress shopping and its best not to get hung up on the tiniest of details until this as been decided. It is about finding that shape that flatters you best and focus on your own personal style. 

3. Set a Budget

Set a budget for your wedding dress and try not to look at dresses that are out of your price range in the shop, unless you plan to go over budget. To avoid going over budget, use more expensive dresses as inspiration and only actually try on dresses that you can realistically afford to buy. I think the most disheartening feeling would be to fall in love and find the most perfect dress that you just cannot afford!

4. Don't Rush

Don't be rushed into making any decisions on your dress or feel pressurised by the wedding consultant to choose a dress. If you think you've found 'the one', you can always go away and think about it before making your mind up. Think things through, as after all, this will probably be the biggest outfit decision of your life and your most photographed one.

5. Most important - Bring a Camera

After trying on so many wonderful dresses, it was really hard to keep track of what dress was which as they all start to get jiggled in your head once you have left the shop. Taking photos of each dress in the order they are tried on and writing down the details of each that you liked and dislike will help when it comes to eliminating or choosing the style you want. If it is permissible to do so, take photos of the Bride in the dress itself as mirrors can be deceiving. After all, it is the wedding photographs you will be looking at for the rest of your life and not the reflection in the shop mirror.
Always check with the store if this is okay first.

How was your wedding dress shopping experience? Any hints or tips of your own for Jessica and Mehmuna?

Friday, 7 February 2014

Buying a House Series - Part I

I imagined...

Since I was a very little girl, I always imagined and fascinated about owning my own home. A place to call my own, a place to call home, a place of love, peace, happiness and serenity. A place of comfort and stability, a solid foundation on which to grow. I imagined gardens and flowers; hanging baskets and pots. I imagined a family; mummy, daddy and children all living together in perfect harmony, until it came to the TV remote of course and the dreaded homework time then all hell would break loose.

I imagined fluffy carpets, tailored curtains, blinds of floral print. Traditional yet contemporary in style, with hints of colour and personality in every room. Each one telling a different story, all beautiful and unique in their own special way. Flowing fields of green and rolling hills; the views I wish to see out of each sash window. A quaint semi-rural village overflowing with natural history, a sense of community, friends and laughter.

Baking cupcakes and birthday cakes; cakes of all colours, sizes and flavours. The smell of freshly baked bread throughout the home. Scrumptious home cooked meals every night as we sit and chat together at our traditionally laid table. A centrepiece of fresh flowers in the spring and candles lit in the cold winter nights.

I imagined...

A perfect home, a perfect place, a perfect family, perfect just for us.

What do you imagine....??? 

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

2014: The Year Life Begins...

A Little About Me...

Hello and welcome to my new look blog,

My name is Carly Lou and I originally created this blog for fashion and beauty but recently I lost my passion for this as it just feels like reviews of products which I am pretty sure is now well covered in the blogging world. I felt as though my blog that I had worked so hard to create lacked personality and individual style and did not show case me as a person. It felt cold and like a review page, and I am sure you could all read your own reviews on said websites. Therefore I am redesigning the content of my blog and want to give it a more personal touch, showing my life and loves and ideas. I want to share my life and keep a personal track of my progress like an online diary of what my life will be now and in the future. Hence, my new name...

My Ever After...

I have such a passion and ambition for life and I am so excited for what is in store for me, obviously taking the bad with the good as I know too well, life is not a bunch roses.

So a bit about me... I am a Biomedical Scientist currently employed by the local hospital. I work in a Haematology and Blood Transfusion Laboratory which is both exciting and challenging. I love my career and profession and have spent my whole life working towards this position. I hope my ever after consists of furthering my career and a continued learning process.

I live with my long term partner Andy of six years (hopefully hubby to be one day hehe) and our 2 kittencats Rosie and Harry.

I am very much a girly girl and a very homely person. I am extremely family orientated and cannot wait to have the typical nuclear family. I love all things beauty and fashion and especially love making my housey a loving, comfortable and cosy home. As after all, home is where the heart is.

I am looking forward to showing you all my ideas for my life and also seeing them come to fruition myself.
I hope someone enjoys my blogs and if not at least I can have a fun time discovering my blogging personality and seeing my ideas come to life through the internet.

Much Love,

Carly Lou

Saturday, 14 December 2013

MOTD: Everyday make up look

Hello my lovelies, 

I just cannot leave the house without wearing makeup, I feel naked. My favourite brand at the moment, as you will know if you regularly read my posts, is L'oreal Paris. Apart from nail polish,  it's my go to brand for most things make up wise. 

See my post on "All Red Everything" for an update on my recent purchases and review. 

My most recent purchases include:
True Match Powder Foundation in D6 W6
Le Blush in shade 145
Super Liner in Black
False Lash Telescopic in Black
Collection Privee in shade Eva

The box at the back was a free Christmas Gift Set which I will post about nearer to Christmas :)

I am super super happy with my purchases and this is my ultimate everyday look as it is really simple to apply and looks effortless yet cute and pretty. Cont....

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Its all about the Berry - OOTD

Hello my lovelies, 

This is my very first OOTD post and I hope you like my style. I am very plain and love simple colours when it comes to    putting outfits together, so not really a fashionista when it comes to shopping. I love love love big bold colours but tend to always go for the same style, so I will buy the same item in most colours that they come in if I really like the item - some may say this is boring but this is "me" and I'm kind of set in my ways so to speak. I like to pick key fashion colours or fabrics and tailor them to my own personal taste, I'm not one to buy clothes that are "in fashion" just because - I pick and choose aspects of trends. So my favourite trend at the moment is the colour Berry!!! 

I've always liked my reds, pinks and purples when it comes to make up and clothes as these show my personality type. I love my big bold reds when going out with friends as I can be a big party animal when I want and love to stand out. My pinks I love for everyday such as work or visiting family as this is my so called sweet and innocent side, kind of a blushing colour hehe. I love my purples as I am very much an autumnal girlie being born in September, I love the homeliness and warmth and depth that deep purples such as the berry can portray. My home is decorated in purple and I always go for purple accessories such as towels, bath mats, flower pots, wall paints. In terms of fragrance, berry is all time favourite, I always away towards the berry air freshners, plug ins and candles for my home.

Okay, so after the little bit about me section my outfit for today sums me upto a tee... 

Jersey Front Waterfall Leather-Look Jacket - Click here

I love this peplum top from New Look in this gorgeous colour as it not only shows off your waist and gives fabulous womanly curves but....


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